You work in a large corporation. There are more that 100 staff. All very different people. All arriving at work from very different environments and cultures. All mixed together in this work environment. And you are working together for a common purpose and mostly in different teams.
A mindfulness practice helps you to stay on task with what you are doing, rather than in your head thinking about something else while you perform work tasks. To be present to what you are doing, rather than ruminating on something which is bothering you about someone at work or at home and not being present to the task.
When you begin a mindfulness practice it can be very difficult to be present to your task. To enjoy what you do. Whether it be typing up a document, making a product, listening to someone on the phone, taking notes in a meeting or listening to several people discussing some changes they think will make the team more productive. There is a tendency in all of us to be present physically but mentally we are somewhere else. Perhaps even creating a drama in our head which causes our body to feel very uncomfortable. The challenge for all of us to notice, to catch ourselves, so to speak, when we are not present to what we are doing. Because when we are fully present to what we are doing we can be much more effective.
Because we are so used to performing a task, particularly a mundane task, without being really present, it might take us a while to notice what we do. For example, let’s take the task of doing the washing the dishes. It is very easy to perform this task and do a good job and yet never be present during the whole process. We are off in our head thinking about something else. When we have completed the task, we do not even remember what we did.
However, if you are present to the task of washing the dishes, you will experience the feel of the water on your hands, you will pay attention to each bowl and plate and knife and fork and spoon. Each pot and pan. And as you focus on the task at hand, there is a flow to what you are doing, no thought is needed. You address the task of washing, of scrubbing, of cleaning. You are in flow with the task. No rush. Present and it feels good.
When you walk to the shops to buy a loaf of bread. If you focus on your walk. The rythmn of the steps, the movement of your legs and your feet. The balance of your body. The stopping and the starting. There is no room for judgement or labelling or stories in this process. No anger or criticism. It just walking or running and there is a flow to the movement and a peace in the process.